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Load Handling Capability of Commercial Power Amplifiers

Five modern power amplifiers were tested using a complex load with an impedance range of 2 to 8 ohms and a phase angle range of -60 to +60 degrees. Output power was increased at each load setting until the amplifier produced 1% THD at 1kHz. This was considered as the distortion-limited maximum output power of the amplifier. The results are presented in three-dimensional plots and show that only few amplifiers can handle the normally encountered complex loudspeaker impedances without excessive distortion. Also, limiting of output power to a fraction of the nominal power is reported for some of the amplifiers, when the load phase angle exceeds a few tens of degrees.

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